Discounts drive online tee time services

It’s hard to imagine this was a surprise to anyone but almost two-thirds of the golfers who use third party tee time online tee time services do so because they think they can get a discount. A National Golf Foundation of 500 core golfers in December found 40 percent use third-party reservations systems often (14 percent) or sometimes (26 percent).

 The sobering stat though is roughly only 5 percent of all tee times are booked through third-party services.

 As usually happens the customer, in this case golfer, will drive this business. A safe assumption though it soon will look like the airlines booking industry. Not only can’t you tell the players without a program but think of long lines to get patted down on the first tee.

 Bridgestone-Love those balls

Bridgestone decided to get serious in the ball business three years ago with its very aggressive program to fit golfers to the proper Bridgestone balls and get   them away from whatever other brand they were playing. Of course since Acushnet’s Titleist and Pinnacle brands have about 60 percent of the market growth for anybody in the ball business was going to be at someone’s expense, presumably Titleist’s.

 Bridgestone is now rightly tooting their horn citing information from Golf Datatech, who tracks this kind of thing, since 2008 Bridgestone marketshare has risen over 50 percent to 11.5 percent of the money spent in on- and off-course retailers.

 Of course this couldn’t have been possible if they weren’t making very good golf balls plus they were able to sign Davis Love III probably because the long time Titleist staffer saw a better deal and really good product.